Saturday, May 25, 2024

Remembrances: Many Gave Some, Some Gave All

 Memorial Day is an American holiday, observed on the last Monday of May, honoring the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military.

Originally known as Decoration Day, it originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971. Many Americans observe Memorial Day by visiting cemeteries or memorials, holding family gatherings and participating in parades. Unofficially, it marks the beginning of the summer season.

Memorial Day, as Decoration Day gradually came to be known, originally honored only those lost while fighting in the Civil War. But during World War I the United States found itself embroiled in another major conflict, and the holiday evolved to commemorate American military personnel who died in all wars, including World War II, The Vietnam War, The Korean War and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

For decades, Memorial Day continued to be observed on May 30, the date General Logan had selected for the first Decoration Day. But in 1968, Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which established Memorial Day as the last Monday in May in order to create a three-day weekend for federal employees. The change went into effect in 1971. The same law also declared Memorial Day a federal holiday.

Radio History May 27

May 27

➦In 1933...Future Canadian media mogul Ted Rogers Jr. was born in Toronto.  He founded his company in 1960 with Toronto radio station CHFI and built it into Canada’s largest wireless, cable and media company. He died from congestive heart failure Dec. 2 2008 at age 75.

➦In 1951…The radio serial "Wild Bill Hickock" began on the Mutual Radio network. Guy Madison and Andy Devine starred on both the radio and syndicated TV versions.

➦In 1957...1050 CHUM-AM became Canada's first Top 40 radio station.

The CHUM Building at 1331 Yonge St., Toronto was the home of 1050 CHUM from 1959 until 2009

Elvis Presley's "All Shook Up" was the first song played. "1050 CHUM" pioneered rock and roll radio in Toronto, and was noteworthy for hosting many noteworthy rock concerts including, among others, visits to Maple Leaf Gardens by Elvis Presley (1957) and The Beatles (1964, '65, and '66).

In the late 1950s, CHUM was calling itself "Radio One", as its ratings continued to increase. An important part of CHUM's success was the station's unpredictable morning man Al Boliska, who joined CHUM in October 1957, after working at station CKLC in Kingston, Ontario.

By 1959, Boliska had made a name for himself as a disc jockey who got listeners talking. He also made them laugh, and became known for telling what he called the "World's Worst Jokes".

Boliska also did a number of stunts, such as taking part in a professional wrestling match with Whipper Billy Watson. When he lost, that led to another stunt, where Boliska stayed away from his show for several days, saying he was now too discouraged by the loss to do his show. A hypnotist was called in, and Boliska's self-esteem was restored.

Boliska left CHUM in late 1963 to go 'across the street' to CKEY. He was replaced by WKBW Buffalo radio & TV personality Jay Nelson, popularly known as "Jungle Jay" from his role as host of a children's show on Buffalo's Channel 7 which was also popular among Toronto youngsters. He would be followed by housewives' jock John Spragge; singer/DJ Mike Darow; Pete Nordheimer, replaced in 1961 by Bob McAdorey, teen DJ Dave Johnson, and all night DJ Bob Laine. Later additions to the CHUM DJ lineup included Duff Roman and Brian Skinner, both of whom came from rival Toronto rocker CKEY (then owned by Jack Kent Cooke).

(Courtesy of the Rock Radio Scrapbook, Click Here for  an early aircheck of 1050 CHUM from July 17, 1957.

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, CHUM DJs included Duke Roberts (also known as Gary Duke for a time), Johnny Mitchell (better known today as Sonny Fox), J. Michael Wilson, Tom Rivers, Scott Carpenter, Jim Van Horne, John Rode, Don Reagan, John Majhor, Mike Cooper, Daryl B, Terry Steele, Mike Holland and Roger Ashby. Among their later night-time hosts was J. D. Roberts, who joined CHUM for a time in 1977, eventually becoming known across North America as White House correspondent for CBS News, then the co-anchor of CNN's morning program American Morning. Rick Moranis, later famous for his work on SCTV and Ghostbusters, was briefly a late-night CHUM DJ in the mid-seventies under the name "Rick Allan".

CHUM became well known for its zany contests. In the 1950's and '60's, it was contests such as 'The Walking Man', where listeners had to spot CHUM's mystery walking man using only clues given out on the air. The 1970s' "I Listen to CHUM" promotion had DJs dialing phone numbers at random and awarding $1,000 to anyone who answered the phone with that phrase. In 1976, there was the CHUM Starsign promotion. Listeners wore a button featuring their astrological sign. If CHUM's 'Starsign spotter' saw you wearing your Starsign, you won prizes such as money or concert tickets to major events.

The CHUM Chart was, for many years, the most influential weekly Top 40 chart in Canada and has been hailed as the longest-running continuously published radio station record survey in North America. The first CHUM Chart was released on May 27, 1957, with Elvis Presley's "All Shook Up" the first Number 1 song.

1050 CHUM aired Top 40 from 1957 to 1986.  Today, 1050 CHUM airs Sports Talk.

Radio History: May 26

May 26

➦In 1886
..iconic performer Al Jolson born Asa Yoelson (Died at age 64 - October 23, 1950) was a Russian-born American singer, comedian, and actor. At the peak of his career, he was dubbed "The World's Greatest Entertainer".  In the 1920s, Jolson was America's most famous and highest-paid entertainer.

Al Jolson - 1938
Although best remembered today as the star of the first talking picture, The Jazz Singer (1927), he starred in a series of successful musical films during the 1930s. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, he was the first star to entertain troops overseas during World War II.

After a period of inactivity, his stardom returned with The Jolson Story (1946), for which Larry Parks played Jolson, with the singer dubbing for Parks. The formula was repeated in a sequel, Jolson Sings Again (1949). In 1950, he again became the first star to entertain GIs on active service in the Korean War, performing 42 shows in 16 days. He died weeks after returning to the U.S., partly owing to the physical exertion of performing. Defense Secretary George Marshall posthumously awarded him the Medal for Merit.

➦In 1903...Canadian radio pioneer Reginald Fessenden was granted a patent for the liquid barretter microphone.

➦In 1920...singer Peggy Lee, whose real name is Norma Delores Egstrom, was born in Jamestown, North Dakota.

She was among the few singers who can handle any type of song — pop, ballad, country, rhythm-and-blues or jazz. Benny Goodman gave her her stage name when she performed with his band from 1941 to ’43. Lee went out on her own after marrying Goodman’s guitarist, Dave Barbour. Her hit records included “Manana (mahn-YAH’-nah),” ”Fever” — a cover of Little Willie John’s r-and-b song — and ”Is That All There Is?” Peggy Lee died of a heart attack January 21st, 2002. She was 81.

Jimmie Rodgers
➦In 1933...Jimmie Rodgers, the “Father of Country Music,” died of tuberculosis in New York City at age 35, just two days after making his final recording.

He was so ill during his final recording sessions that he had to rest between takes on a cot.  Jimmie Rodgers recorded his first million-seller “T for Texas,” also known as “Blue Yodel,” in 1927, becoming country music’s first superstar. He never appeared on any major radio show or played the Grand Ole Opry. But he, Hank Williams and songwriter-publisher Fred Rose were the first to be elected to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1961.

➦In 1940...CBS Radio first presented “Invitation to Learning”.  The 30-minute Sunday morning program that featured a discussion of great books, with Lyman Bryson as host, continued for 15 years.

Joe Kelly
➦In 1959...Chicago-based radio host Joe Kelly, who MC’d the WLS National Barn Dance & NBC’s Quiz Kids (1940-53), died at age 57.

➦In 1962...the original version of “Twist and Shout,” by the Isley Brothers, was released. The song was revived two years later by the Beatles.

➦In 1971...Don McLean was in New York to record his soon-to-be iconic signature song “American Pie.”

➦In 1989...Radio stations staged 30 seconds of silence at 7:42 AM (EST), to honor Radio.

Carleton Morse
➦In 1993...Radio dramatist, Carleton Morse, best known for "One Man's Family", died at age 91.

"One Man's Family" centered on a family in the well-to-do Sea Cliff area of San Francisco, overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge. The tribulations of its main characters, Fanny, Henry and Jack Barbour, dominated the national airwaves from the time the show began in 1932 until it went off the air in 1959 after 3,256 episodes.

He covered radio and police news for The Sacramento Union before moving to San Francisco, where he worked for several newspapers, including The Call, The Bulletin and The Chronicle. He took a writing job at NBC in 1929 and went on to became a legendary radio pioneer.

At its peak, "One Man's Family" rivaled "Amos 'n' Andy" in popularity.

Dan Daniel - WCBS-FM
In 1996...Dan Daniel started at Oldies WCBS 101.1 FM NYC

He started as a disc jockey at age seventeen on Armed Forces Radio with the US Navy. His first commercial job was at KXYZ in Houston in 1955 and he then worked at WDGY in Minneapolis before moving to WMCA in 1961.

His first broadcast at WMCA was on August 18, 1961. He started on the graveyard shift overnight but from 1962 to 1968 he played the top 40 hits from 4 pm to 7 pm. The station produced a survey of the current sales in New York record stores and Dandy Dan gave the countdown of the week's best sellers every Wednesday in this late afternoon slot.

From 1968 to 1970, he did the early morning drive-to-work slot before leaving WMCA after nearly nine years; his final broadcast was on 11 July 1970.

Dan was heard coast-to-coast on NBC Radio's "Monitor" in the summer of 1973.

He subsequently worked on WYNY-FM where he hosted the mid-day slot and later morning and afternoon drives. He then did a stint at WHN playing country music before returning to WYNY-FM. Finally, he moved to WCBS-FM in 1996. He retired from WCBS on December 31, 2002.

Daniel died on June 21, 2016 after falling in his home the previous day. He was 81.

Radio History: May 25


➦In 1905...Journalist Joseph C. Harsch born (Died at age 93 – June 3, 1998) was a newspaper, radio, and television journalist. He spent more than sixty years writing for the Christian Science Monitor

Harsch made his first broadcasts during the time he was in Berlin as bureau chief for the Christian Science Monitor, filling in sporadically for William L. Shirer who was the noted Berlin correspondent for CBS. After Harsch returned to the United States, he joined CBC in 1943. For the next six years Harsch broadcast his news analysis on WTOP, Washington D.C.

Because of his background in London, Harsch was hired by the BBC when influential broadcaster Raymond Gram Swing gave up his post with the weekly radio program American Commentary. Harsch alternated his coverage from Washington with Clifton Utley, who reported from Chicago.

In 1953, Harsch shifted his allegiance to NBC, serving as a news analyst for four years before returning to London as the senior European correspondent for the network. ABC became his broadcast home in 1967, when he was a commentator for the network until 1971, assigned to the American Entertainment Network effective 1/1/68.

Lindsey Nelson
➦In 1919...sportscaster Lindsey Nelson born (Died at age 76 – June 10, 1995), He was best known for his long career calling play-by-play of college football and New York Mets baseball.

Nelson spent 17 years with the Mets and three years with the San Francisco Giants. For 33 years Nelson covered college football, including 26 Cotton Bowls, five Sugar Bowls, four Rose Bowls, and 14 years announcing syndicated Notre Dame games. He is in 13 separate Halls of Fame. Fans remember a talented broadcaster, an expert storyteller, and a true sports enthusiast. From his colorful jackets to his equally colorful broadcasts and enthusiastic manner of speaking, Nelson established himself as one of the industry's leading sportscasters.

Nelson broke into broadcasting in 1948 following a short career as a reporter in Columbia, Tennessee, for the Columbia Daily Herald newspaper, He was the first play-by-play announcer for the "Vol Network," which was set up to broadcast the UT Vols games.

➦In 1985...CBS resumed weekly national play-by-play baseball on radio for the first time in 20 years as Brent Musburger called the game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the New York Mets. The Mutual Broadcasting System was the last radio network to have offered regular-season coverage of baseball back in the 1960’s.

➦In 2013...Veteran radio talk show host Gene Burns died from a stroke at age 72.  In his early twenties, Burns was hired as news director for radio station WWHG in his hometown of Hornell, New York, before moving on to WSBA in York, PA. He began his career as talk radio host at WCBM in Baltimore in the mid-1960s. While at WCBM, Burns did two major international assignments, going to Vietnam  in 1968 and the Middle East in 1969.

Gene Burns
Following a brief stint with WEEI in Boston, Burns served as a talk show host as well as program director at WKIS-AM in Orlando, FL, beginning in 1971. He would remain there until 1981, when he departed for WCAU in Philadelphia in 1981. He then returned to Orlando and WKIS in the early 1980s and was named the station's operations manager in 1984.  In 1985, Burns returned to Boston, hosting a talk show on WRKO for eight years.

In 1993, Burns moved to New York City and began hosting a nationally syndicated talk program from the studios of WOR.

In 1995, he began broadcasting for KGO-AM in San Francisco. He hosted a talk show of political and social commentary called The Gene Burns Program on weeknights, as well as a program that focused on wine and fine dining in the San Francisco Bay Area called Dining Around with Gene Burns which was broadcast weekly on Saturdays.

Friday, May 24, 2024

Chicagoland Radio: Alpha Media Launches Free Country


Alpha Media Chicago is excited to announce the rebranding of its legacy Country station, WCCQ, to Free Country 98.3. In a strategic move to better serve the Chicagoland area, the station will now also broadcast on a second signal at 102.3, for wider coverage for Country music fans. It’s only fitting that Free Country debuts on Memorial Day Weekend.

Joining the newly created Free Country is Drew Walker, a celebrated 20-year veteran of the Chicago market. Drew, who previously worked at WUSN-FM, will take on the roles of Assistant Content Director and Music Director for Free Country. Walker’s extensive experience and deep connection with the local audience make him a valuable first addition to the team.

“I am elated to be part of Free Country 98.3 and 102.3,” said Drew Walker. “What an incredible opportunity to bring the best country music to even more fans across all of Chicagoland. The team at Alpha Media is truly special, let’s go!”

Phil Becker, EVP of Content for Alpha Media, emphasized the unique advantages of radio in today’s media landscape. “Radio’s greatest benefit is often overlooked – it’s completely free. Free to listen, free to win, and free to subscribe. While streaming services and tech companies are charging for music and content, Free Country at 98.3 and 102.3 is dedicated to providing Country music and fan experiences to Chicagoans at no cost.” 

Becker further expressed enthusiasm about Drew Walker’s role and hinted at the addition of other local air personalities in the near future.

WCCQ 98.3 FM (3 Kw)

 
WXLC 102.3 (3 Kw)

Brian Foster, RVP of Alpha’s Chicago region shared: “I am in awe of the energy, creativity, and ingenuity our team has shown over the past few weeks. Buckle up, we are about to go on a very exciting ride. Feel ‘free’ to give us a listen!”

This is not the first time Alpha Media has successfully executed a strategic simulcast on dual frequencies in a major market. In April 2022, the company launched Bay Country on 94.5 and 92.1 in San Jose / San Francisco California.

Austin Radio: Audacy Launches Texas Country On 95.9 FM


 Audacy announced the launch of Austin’s 95.9 Texas Country, effective May 24 at 12:00 p.m. CT. The station, previously known as The New Hot 95.9, will now play a blend of classic Country and contemporary artists from the Texas music scene, including George Strait, Willie Nelson, Waylon & the Boys, Aaron Watson, Cody Johnson, Kacey Musgraves and Cody Jinks.

“We’re delighted to launch Austin’s 95.9 Texas Country and continue delivering this wildly popular format to listeners on the FM dial,” said Doug Abernethy, Regional President, Audacy. “This station will offer the perfect blend of genre classics and the music shaping the Country music industry today.” 

On-air staff and programming updates will be made in the coming weeks. 

đŸ“»Listeners can tune in to Austin’s 95.9 Texas Country in Austin on air and nationwide on the Audacy app and website. The station will also be heard via KKMJ-HD3. Fans can also connect with the station via X and Facebook. 

Survey: NBC's Lester Holt Is TV's Most Trusted

ABC's David Muir, CBS' Norah O'Donnell, NBC's Lester Holt

According to a recent Hollywood Reporter/Morning Consult survey, NBC Nightly News host Lester Holt continues to be the most trusted television news personality in America. Let’s dive into the details:

Trust Ratings:

  • NBC Nightly News host Lester Holt has the highest share of respondents, 65%, saying they placed “a lot” or “some” trust in the anchor, leading a new THR/Morning Consult poll
  • Among the most trusted are ABC’s Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts (64%) and World News Tonight anchor David Muir (63%), as well as NBC’s Today show staple Al Roker (64%).
  • On cable news, CNN’s Who’s Talking to... host Chris Wallace and Anderson Cooper both earned 60% of respondents saying they have “a lot” or “some” trust, while MSNBC’s most-trusted name is Ali Velshi (55%) and anchor Harris Faulkner (53%) leads for Fox News.

Cable News TV Ratings Jump During Trump Trial


During Donald Trump’s criminal trial in New York, all three cable news networks experienced a surge in ratings. Let’s break down the details:

Daytime Ratings:

  • Fox News continued its ratings dominance, with an average of 1.46 million total viewers during the period from April 15 to May 16. This was a 14% increase year-over-year. In the key demographic (25-54 age range), Fox News had 169,000 viewers.
  • MSNBC came in second, notching 1.06 million average viewers, which was a 21% uptick year-over-year. They had 111,000 viewers in the 25-54 demographic.
  • CNN secured third place with 563,000 total viewers, showing a significant 27% increase compared to the prior year. In the 25-54 demographic, CNN had 98,000 viewers1.

Primetime Ratings:

  • Fox News maintained its lead in primetime, scoring 2.34 million total viewers, a 28% increase year-over-year. They also had 244,000 viewers in the 25-54 age range.
  • MSNBC followed with 1.59 million total viewers, an 11% increase from the previous year. In the key demographic, they had 154,000 viewers.
  • CNN secured 634,000 total viewers during primetime, marking a 12% uptick year-over-year. Their 25-54 demo viewership stood at 119,0001.

Daytime Surge and Courtroom Coverage: The more crucial ratings story emerged during daytime programming, especially when the court was in session for Trump’s criminal hush-money charges. Both CNN and MSNBC saw monumental ratings gains year-over-year during this time.

While CNN lagged behind MSNBC in total viewership, it consistently topped the 25-54 demographic. CNN’s primetime lineup struggled during a specific week, but they compensated by providing relevant updates from inside the courtroom during daytime coverage1.

In summary, the historic criminal case against the former president captivated cable news viewers, leading to significant year-over-year gains for all three networks during the trial.

MLB Remains Critical of Diamond Sports Group


MLB commissioner Rob Manfred has been critical of Diamond Sports Group (DSG), the bankrupt parent company of Bally Sports. Despite the challenges posed by DSG’s bankruptcy reorganization, Manfred and the league have not yet decided whether to formally object to DSG’s reorganization plan. 

The uncertainty arises from DSG’s ongoing carriage standoff with Comcast, the country’s second-largest cable distributor. DSG’s lack of deals with major providers, including the NBA, NHL, and MLB, further complicates the situation1.

Rob Manfred
While the situation with DSG unfolds, MLB is actively considering a significant, long-term reorganization of its media rights. The league is exploring a nationally focused structure similar to what the NFL has used for decades. 

Such a move would help avoid entanglements like those with DSG. However, implementing a national media strategy presents internal and external challenges, particularly from a labor perspective with the MLB Players Association. Manfred emphasized the need to adapt to changes in the local media environment while ensuring fan access to games. The goal is to create a frictionless experience for fans to watch the games they want1.

Additionally, representatives from Nike briefed MLB team owners on their remediation plans for the much-maligned MLB uniforms. These repairs, set to take effect next season, include better color matching for road gray uniforms, improved sweat-wicking properties, larger letters on the backs of jerseys, and enhanced customization of players’ uniform pants1.

The media landscape continues to evolve, and MLB is exploring ways to enhance fan engagement while navigating the complexities of media rights and distribution2. As the league weighs its options, the challenges posed by DSG’s bankruptcy remain a focal point for Manfred and MLB stakeholders

Miami Radio: Throwbacks Are Relaunching Power 96


Audacy relaunches Power 96 (WPOW-FM) as Miami’s New Home for Throwbacks. Effective immediately, the station, which had previously played Rhythmic Top 40 hits, will now feature a collection of Throwback favorites from artists like 2Pac, Pitbull, Notorious B.I.G., Usher and Jay-Z.

“Our listeners have been asking for it, and we're excited to announce the next chapter of Power 96 as Miami's new home for throwbacks,” said Will Calder, Brand Manager, Power 96. “This music is the heartbeat of Miami's vibrant culture, shaping our city's identity and bringing back the best memories and feel-good vibes that make South Florida so unique.”

Power 96’s weekday lineup will continue as follows.
  • 6:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. ET: “Wake Up Miami with DJ Zog & Ivy Unleashed”
  • 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. ET: Johanna Gomez
  • 2:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. ET: Mijo
đŸ“»Listeners can tune in to Power 96 (WPOW-FM) in Miami on air and nationwide on the Audacy app and website. Fans can also connect with the station via X, Facebook and Instagram

Tlaib Aide Obstructs Fox News View Of Congresswoman


Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a "war criminal" on Thursday during fiery remarks that grew more contentious when a Capitol Hill staffer used an umbrella to obstruct a Fox News cameraman who was filming the exchange. 
 
The unidentified aide is seen in video of the encounter repeatedly opening and closing his umbrella. The action interferes with the camera shot and at one point the umbrella seemingly makes contact with the operator, who witnesses say was hit in the face and upper body.

The interaction occurred as Chad Pergram, Fox News Channel's senior congressional correspondent, was asking Tlaib about Netanyahu potentially being asked to address members of Congress. The prospects for such an invite have gained momentum in the wake of the decision by the International Criminal Court to issue an arrest warrant for Netanyahu, who has overseen Israel's war against Hamas terrorists in Gaza. The move by the ICC has drawn bipartisan ire, though Tlaib has been a consistent critic of Netanyahu.

"What happens if Netanyahu comes to speak?" Pergram asks Tlaib in the video as the staffer opens the umbrella, obstructing the camera's view and forcing Pergram to move.

"Ms. Tlaib, what happens if Netanyahu comes to speak? Is that a mistake by the speaker to extend this request?" Pergram continues.

The staffer is then seen closing the umbrella as Pergram asks Tlaib: "Would you attend? Would you protest in any form?"

Tlaib answers, slamming Netanyahu and those who would consider inviting him to speak to Congress.

"I don't know, inviting a war criminal to Congress is a sham," Tlaib says. "It's shameful."

As she responds, the staffer steps between the cameraman and Pergram, who is still questioning Tlaib, and opens the umbrella again. The camera then pans wildly as the umbrella makes contact with the operator.


An outspoken critic of Israel's war with Hamas, Tlaib called for the arrest of Netanyahu and other senior Israeli officials earlier this month for what she called violations of the Genocide Convention under international law.

Fox News Digital has reached out to Capitol Police for comment.

Wichita Radio: KEYN Unveils Its Summer Concert Series


Audacy announces the KEYN Summer Concert Series. This series of free concerts, hosted by 103.7 KEYN (KEYN-FM), will be held on select Fridays throughout the summer in the Wichita, KS, area, and bring a diverse lineup of bands to two locations: Wichita's Naftzger Park and Andover's Capitol Federal Amphitheater.

“The KEYN Summer Concert Series promises to deliver unique and unforgettable musical experiences under the summer skies,” said Becky Domyan, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Audacy Wichita. “Whether you're a dedicated music lover or just looking for a fun way to spend your summer evenings, we look forward to spending time with our fans this summer.”

Concert Schedule
  • June 14: Across The Pond, Wichita's Naftzger Park
  • June 28: Llew Brown Band, Andover's Capitol Federal Amphitheater
  • July 12: Big Fat Fun, Andover's Capitol Federal Amphitheater
  • July 19: The Banned, Andover's Capitol Federal Amphitheater
  • July 26: The Source Band, Andover's Capitol Federal Amphitheater
  • August 2: Fast Lane, Wichita's Naftzger Park
  • August 9: Lucky People, Wichita's Naftzger Park
  • August 16: The Roadhouse Saints, Wichita's Naftzger Park
For more information, please click here.

đŸ“»Listeners can tune in to 103.7 KEYN (KEYN-FM) in Wichita on air and nationwide on the Audacy app and website. Fans can also connect with the station via X, Facebook and Instagram.

Pittsburgh Radio: WDVE-FM To Remain Home for The NFL Steelers


iHeartMedia Pittsburgh announced today an extension of its audio agreement with the Pittsburgh Steelers which will have iHeart Media powering the newly created "Steelers Audio Network" through the 2028 season.

The "Steelers Audio Network" will feature game day broadcasts, ancillary programs, digital audio (Steelers Nation Radio), podcasts and social media content. Fans can find the "Steelers Audio Network" and its programming year-round across a variety of platforms - 102.5 WDVE, Fox Sports Pittsburgh (970AM), Steelers Nation Radio, the Steelers mobile app, the iHeartRadio mobile app, as well as the team and station's websites. The partnership also includes promotional support across all six iHeartMedia Pittsburgh stations and websites.

In addition, 102.5 WDVE will continue to be the home of Pittsburgh Steelers game broadcasts. Steelers games have been broadcast on the station since 1999.

"We are excited to announce the continuation of our long-standing partnership with iHeart Media and our flagship station, 102.5 WDVE," said Ryan Huzjak, Steelers Vice President of Sales and Marketing. "We teamed up with iHeart to build a new platform that allows Steelers Nation to connect with the team - where they want and on their terms."

Ed Werder Longtime NFL Reporter Exits ESPN

Ed Werder Exits ESPN

Ed Werder, a longtime NFL reporter, is leaving ESPN after a 26-year run with the network.  His contract was expiring and was not renewed. 

During his first stint at ESPN from 1998 to 2017, Werder established himself as a leading voice on the Dallas Cowboys and the league, covering events such as the Super Bowl and the NFL draft. He was even honored by the Pro Football Hall of Fame for his work. After being laid off during budget cuts in 2017, he returned to ESPN in 2019, but now he’s once again moving on to explore new opportunities. 


Werder’s departure marks the end of an era, and fans will undoubtedly miss his insightful reporting and analysis.

5/24 WAKE-UP CALL: Thousands Rally for Trump In The Bronx


Former President Donald Trump promised Thursday evening to “make New York City great again” during a raucous rally in the South Bronx, his first major campaign event in the state of his birth since 2016. “This is some turnout,” Trump told a rowdy crowd in Crotona Park. “We have thousands of people outside the gate.”

The event was permitted to host up to 3,500 people, but thousands more gathered outside security checkpoints in the 127.5-acre public park in the hope of catching a glimpse of the 45th president or a snatch of his remarks. Trump campaign senior adviser Chris LaCivita claimed to The Post that 20,000 people had RSVPed to the event, thought no immediate crowd estimate was made available by the NYPD. In his remarks, the presumptive GOP presidential nominee lamented that “Joe Biden is not getting the job done for the Bronx” and “not getting the job done for New York.”

“Our subways are squalid and unsafe, the ceiling tiles are falling down, and they look worse than a Third World country,” continued Trump, 77. “The medians of our highways are crumbling, our sidewalks are littered with garbage bottles and trash.

➤LATEST BORDER BILL FAILS: The Senate again failed to advance a bipartisan border-security bill. The vote was 43 in favor and 50 opposed. Republicans dismissed the episode as a stunt designed to protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents. Democrats said the vote showcases what they call Republicans’ hypocrisy in using the border as a political cudgel on the campaign trail while turning down opportunities to address it in Congress by changing the law. Over in the House, lawmakers grilled the leaders of Northwestern, Rutgers and UCLA over antisemitism and how they handled recent pro-Palestinian protests on their campuses. Elsewhere in Washington, the Supreme Court restored a white-dominated congressional district drawn by the South Carolina legislature, overruling a lower court.

➤CHAOS SLOWS GAZA AID: Hijacking, mobs, and combat are creating a significant stumbling block to humanitarian aid delivered to Gaza, forcing officials to develop alternative routes for trucks arriving by the Pentagon's newly-built pier, U.S. officials said Thursday. The Biden administration has trumpeted the effort of 1,000 U.S. troops to build a $320 million floating pier and causeway as pivotal to delivering food and medicine to Palestinians caught in the war between Israel and Hamas. Instead, the two-month effort has gotten off to a slow start in what officials termed a "staggering" need. Deliveries were suspended for a time after trucks in the first convoys were hijacked.  Daniel Dieckhaus, director for USAID’s Levant Response Management Team, described the effort to deliver aid as "incredibly complicated" because of active fighting and desperate needs in Gaza.


➤DAD, SON RAPED WOMAN, BEFORE KILLING HER
: Bone-chilling new footage shows a Hamas terrorist and his teenage son casually telling Israeli interrogators how they took turns raping a woman, then executed her during the Oct. 7 terror rampage. The NY Post reports Jamal Hussein Ahmad Radi, 47, and his 18-year-old son, Abdallah, were seized by the Israel Defense Forces in the Gaza Strip this spring and subsequently questioned about the terror attack. Jamal described finding a woman who was “screaming” and “crying” in a house at Kibbutz Nir Oz, a community near the Israel-Gaza border, Jamal claimed that he did not know what happened to the woman after the rape, but his teen son told the interrogator that his father killed the desperate victim. “My father raped her, then I did and then my cousin did and then we left but my father killed the woman after we finished raping her,” Abdallah said in his own interview tape.

➤AND THE HITS JUST KEEP ON COMING FOR DIDDY: Another woman has come forward and filed a lawsuit against music mogul Sean “Diddy” Combs for allegedly drugging and raping her multiple times, beginning when she was a student at New York City’s Fashion Institute of Technology in the 1990s. The mogul’s latest accuser, April Lampros, claimed that Combs offered to be her mentor in the fashion industry when she first met the rapper in 1995, according to a lawsuit obtained by TMZ. After a night out in a Soho bar, where Lampros alleges Combs overserved her alcohol, he took her back to his room at the Millennium Hotel, where she says she felt “the walls were closing in on her” as he began to force himself on her, the suit says. Lampros said she remained conscious when Combs began raping her but was unable to defend herself. She woke up the next morning “nude, sore and confused,” the suit states.

CNN Primetime Ratings Hit Low Milestone


CNN faces a significant challenge in its primetime ratings. During the week of May 13-19, from 8 to 11 p.m., the network experienced its lowest-rated week since 1991 among viewers aged 25 to 54. Specifically:

Viewership Numbers: In the coveted demographic of viewers aged 25 to 54, CNN drew just 83,000 viewers during that week. By contrast, Fox News garnered more than twice that audience, with 186,000 viewers in the same key demo. MSNBC followed as a distant second with 111,000 viewers.

Total Viewership: CNN’s total viewership for the week was also paltry, reaching 494,000. In comparison, Fox News had 2 million total viewers, and MSNBC pulled in 1.1 million.

Mark Thompson, CNN’s new boss, has faced criticism for not making significant programming changes or strategic moves since joining in October. Some insiders have expressed concern that he may not be effectively addressing the network’s challenges. Thompson’s focus has been on modernizing the organization, but the primetime lineup remains largely unchanged.

Despite these struggles, a spokesperson for CNN emphasized that their primetime ratings are growing year over year among viewers aged 25-54. Additionally, the network’s lineup, from “Erin Burnett Outfront” at 7 p.m. to the rebroadcast of “Anderson Cooper 360” at midnight, is registering double-digit, year-over-year growth in total viewers.

Stock Price Remains A Concern For iHeartMedia


iHeartMedia has been facing significant challenges in the stock market. Let’s delve into the details:

Recent Stock Performance: On May 9, 2024, iHeartMedia’s CEO Bob Pittman and COO/CFO Rich Bressler hosted the company’s first-quarter 2024 earnings call. Unfortunately, the timing of their call overlapped with a call hosted by Townsquare Media executives, leaving no room for analysts to ask questions during iHeartMedia’s call.

As a result, iHeartMedia’s stock experienced a 36% decline in value on that day.

Fast forward two weeks, and the situation has worsened: iHeartMedia’s share price is now trading below $1 per share.

Company Overview: It has three main segments:

  • Multiplatform Group: Offers broadcast radio stations, sponsorship and events, and operates Premiere Networks, a national radio network.
  • Digital Audio Group: Provides podcasting, digital sites, newsletters, and the popular iHeartRadio app.
  • Audio & Media Services Group: Engages in media representation and provides scheduling and broadcast software.

Stock Price History: The latest closing stock price for iHeartMedia (as of May 17, 2024) is $1.21. The all-time high was $27.93 on June 24, 2021, but the current share price is significantly lower. The 52-week high was $4.74, while the low was $1.133.

Recent News: iHeartMedia has been in the spotlight due to its involvement in events like Can’t Cancel Pride 2024 and partnerships with artists and organizations. However, the stock’s decline remains a cause for concern, and investors are closely monitoring the situation.

In summary, iHeartMedia faces challenges in the stock market, and its share price has dipped below $1. As the company navigates these difficulties, stakeholders are keeping a close eye on its performance.

Rochester NY Radio: Billy Kidd Celebrates 40 Years


92.5 WBEE afternoon host Billy Kidd is celebrating 40 years in Rochester radio, and the station is commemorating this milestone with a special morning show celebration on Friday, May 24 from 5:30 to 10:00 a.m. ET.

During the show, Kidd will tell stories and experiences from his 40-year career and tenure at WBEE. Former station veteran Terry Clifford will make her return for the day and join the program.

“Billy is not only the beloved familiar voice that our listeners hear every day on the radio, but he’s also a major part of the heart and soul of our staff,” said Sue Munn, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Audacy Rochester. “He is a huge team builder at our company, and over the years has helped launch many careers of the superstars you hear today on WBEE. We’re honored to be alongside him to celebrate his 40th year in radio and look forward to the next 40.”

Billy Kidd
“My radio career started at Burger Middle School when I convinced the principal to let us play records in the cafeteria during lunch class,” said Kidd. “I’m still playing records these days, just to a much bigger audience. I’ve never had any interest in moving from city to city chasing a radio career, and frankly, I’ve never had to because it all happened here at home in Rochester. I’m surrounded by people I love, playing the music I love and hopefully putting a smile on people’s faces, even if it’s just for a few minutes on their ride home from work. I couldn’t imagine doing anything else for a living. I am so blessed.”

Kidd launched his career in 1984 as an intern with long-time Bee Morning Coffee Club co-host Terry Clifford. Additional roles have included board operator, morning show producer on then-WBBF, evening host on 92.5 WBEE, Music Director and currently, Assistant Brand Manager of 92.5 WBEE. Kidd, whose show has consistently reached No. 1 in his afternoon drive daypart, helped the station earn Radio Station of the Year at the 2024 ACM Awards.

In 2019, Kidd was recognized as Embrace Your Sisters Volunteer of the Year. Embrace Your Sisters offers financial support to people being treated for breast cancer.

Listeners can tune in to 92.5 WBEE (WBEE-FM) in Rochester on air and nationwide on the Audacy app and website. Listeners can also connect with the station via X, Facebook and Instagram.

Twin Cities Radio: KDWB Promotes Leak, Hess To Morning Show


iHeartMedia Top 40 KDWB/Minneapolis has announced Vont Leak and Bailey Hess have been added The Dave Ryan Show. The Dave Ryan show broadcasts weekdays from 5:30 a.m.- 10 a.m and features 31 year KDWB veteran Dave Ryan and Jenny Luttenberger.

“To get an opportunity to be on The Dave Ryan Show is a blessing and truly, an anomaly that I don’t take for granted. Since joining 101.3 KDWB nine months ago, I’ve been welcomed with open arms so I’m excited to officially move to mornings and wake up with the Twin Cities,” said Vont Leak, 101.3 KDWB on-air personality.

“As a Minnesota native, Dave Ryan’s voice has graced my ears for the last 30 years, so I’m beyond jazzed to join the amazing crew at KDWB. I can’t wait to bring my quirky enthusiasm and unique perspective to the team and introduce a lot of what’s great about the Twin Cities to the Morning Show,” said Bailey Hess, 101.3 KDWB on-air personality.

Charlotte Radio: Ace & TJ Show Moving from WNKS to WKQC


Beasley Media Group has announced the Ace & TJ Syndicated Show will officially move from WNKS to WKQC beginning on Tuesday, May 28.

The Ace & TJ Show is currently aired Monday through Friday from 9 A.M. – 12Noon on WNKS-FM. Beginning on Tuesday, May 28th, Ace & TJ will officially move to afternoons from 3 P.M. 7 P.M. on WKQC.

WNKS CURRENT LINEUP

  • 6 A.M.- 9 A.M: Maney & LauRen Show
  • 9 A.M.-12N: Ace & TJ
  • 12NOON – 3P.M: Cameron Moore

WNKS NEW LINEUP (As of 5/28)
  • 6 A.M. – 10 A.M: Maney & LauRen Show
  • 10 A.M. – 3 P.M: Cameron Moore
“Buckle up Charlotte, the Iconic Ace & TJ show is back with the all the belly laughs and the same wit and wisdom that made them legends.” said Beasley Vice President of Music & Entertainment and Director of Charlotte Operations, John Reynolds. “Given the show’s style, it’s the perfect fit for WKQC!”

“Every single pleasure sensor in my enormous brain has been stimulated since I received word of our move to K 104.7,” said TJ. “Now, we begin similar stimulation to the brains of the audience!”

Ace added, “We are very excited to be part of K104 .7 because the combination of their audience and their music with our history in Charlotte is a perfect fit.”

R.I.P.: Charlie Colin, Founding Member of The Group Train

Charlie Colin (1966-2024)

Charlie Colin, a bassist and founding member of the rock group Train, has died. He was 58, according to the L-A Times.

Colin’s sister Carolyn Stephens confirmed his death to the Associated Press. No cause of death was given, but TMZ reported that Colin died after slipping and falling in the shower.

Train wrote an Instagram post confirming his death. “He was THE sweetest guy and what a handsome chap,” the band said. “Let’s make a band that’s the only reasonable thing to do. His unique bass playing and beautiful guitar work helped get folks to notice us in SF and beyond... You’re a legend, Charlie. Go charm the pants off those angels.”


Colin, a native of Newport Beach, attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston. After Colin reconnected with former bandmates Jimmy Stafford and Rob Hotchkiss in San Francisco, they formed Train with singer Pat Monahan and drummer Scott Underwood in the ‘90s.

The group settled into an ageless light rock sound that proved commercially successful and durable on radio, landing several hits including “Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me),” “Meet Virginia” and “Hey, Soul Sister.” The group was nominated for two Grammys in 2002, for record and rock performance for “Drops of Jupiter.”

Radio History: May 24

➦In 1844...Samuel F.B. Morse gave the first public demonstration of his telegraph by sending a message from the Supreme Court Chamber in the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. to the B&O Railroad "outer depot" (now the B&O Railroad Museum) in Baltimore. The famous message was, "What hath God wrought?"

➦In 1915...Thomas Edison invents telescribe to record telephone conversations

➦In 1935...The Mutual Broadcasting System network aired its inaugural live event—the first-ever night baseball game, between the Cincinnati Reds and the Philadelphia Phillies. That October, the network began a decades-long run as broadcaster of baseball's World Series, with airtime responsibilities shared between WGN's Bob Elson and Quin Ryan and WLW's Red Barber (NBC and CBS also carried the series that year; the Fall Classic would air on all three networks through 1938).

➦In 1958…Formally named "United Press Associations" for incorporation and legal purposes, but publicly known and identified as United Press or UP, the news agency was created by the 1907 uniting of three smaller news syndicates. It became United Press International after absorbing the International News Service (INS). As either UP or UPI, the agency was among the largest newswire services in the world, competing domestically for about 90 years with the Associated Press and internationally with AP, Reuters and Agence France-Presse.

➦In 1963...The Beatles recorded the first program of their own BBC radio series, “Pop Go the Beatles”. The theme song was a version of “Pop Goes the Weasel”.

➦In 1981...Radio, TV Actor and personality George Jessel, who often performed with the nickname “America’s Toastmaster General,” died after a heart attack at age 83.

➦In 2008...Comedian Dick Martin, a co-star with Dan Rowan on NBC TV’s iconic “Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In”, died of respiratory problems at age 86.  Early in his career, Martin was a staff writer for Duffy's Tavern, a radio situation comedy.

Thursday, May 23, 2024

NewsNation To Go 24/7 to Appeal To Broader Audience


NewsNation, the cable and satellite television news channel, has made a significant move by transitioning to a 24/7 format. This expansion means that viewers can now access news coverage around the clock, providing a continuous stream of information on current events, politics, business, and more.

Here are some key points about NewsNation’s 24/7 format: